The CBC and the majority of main stream news outlets. Seem to be shocked by Vic Toews announcement, that Canada’s oldest prison in Kingston Ontario (been open for 177 years) and Leclerc medium security prison. Will be closed within the next two years.
Why would this government close these prisons in a time that we have seen them push a 9 billion dollar investment into new prisons and renovations. New laws that will create increased prison population, and are still in the midst of “economic hard times”?
This is a crisis in the making.
Just before the Penetanguishene prison on Ontario was privatized in a short lived (5 years) private prison program. The prison was severely overpopulated, violence was rampant, and it was an overall bad situation. The guards where continually put into dangerous situations, and had become fed up. This is when Robert Sampson, at the time the Tory correctional services minister brought the idea of privatization to the table. (problem, reaction, solution)
We are now seeing this very same Hegelian dialect but on a nation level. Longer sentencing for smaller crimes, and fewer prisons will mean overcrowding of jails and prisons. Violence rates will climb and the guards will be put into danger.
Once again Robert Sampson will be right there. He lead a federal panel reviewing Canada’s prison system, for the Torie government in recent years.
We can see the puzzle pieces of privatized prison coming to Canada very clearly. Between the massive increase of funding, new laws to increase inmate population (Penetanguishene failed because there was not enough inmates to make a profit), and the American Koch brothers (heavily invested in the private prison system in America) lobbying the Harper government.
Unless Canadians make it loud and clear that private prisons are unacceptable. We will see them here very soon.